Impressionism is a 19th century art movement that originated in Paris. The main impressionists of the time included Manet, Monet, Renoir, and Degas (Auricchio, 2000). Van Gogh is often referred to as an impressionist artist. However, Van Gogh was a post-impressionist who modified the techniques of the early impressionists (Auricchio, 2000).

Impressionist paintings are characterized by thin but visible brush strokes, emphasis on human perception, and a focus on lighting. The impressionist painters used freely brushed vibrant colours to construct their works. They portrayed overall visual effects and shifted their focus away from lines and contours (Griffel, 1994). They also painted realistic scenes, such as landscapes and scenes of modern life, which was radical in their time.

In the mid-19th century, the Academie des Beaux-Arts upheld traditional French painting standards. The Academie preferred paintings that looked real when examined closely- works in which brush strokes were not visible, and which used more conservative colours (Auricchio, 2000). The impressionist painters placed importance on human perception and expressionism. Impressionism was largely a democratic movement; the painters attacked the hierarchy of Paris’ art world. Impressionism was a revolutionary movement in visual arts that later found its way into music and literature.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

To learn more about impressionism, navigate through and explore the different pages of this website. ‘The Painting Process’ video below is a great place to get your feet wet. Feel free to post any comments, and facilitate discussion in the ‘Leave A Reply’ box at the bottom of this page.


(Le Prince, 2010)


One thought on “EXPLORE

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Impressionism was a 19th century movement in art. Impressionist artists distanced themselves from realism.

Top Posts & Pages

Art and Technology

The technology of impressionism is two-fold. Firstly, the techniques employed by the impressionist artists were central to the movement. Secondly, the development of various artistic tools allowed the artists to employ a variety of impressionist techniques. See the 'Technology' page for more information.

Click on the photo above and create your own works of art using art pad. Click 'Save and Send' and opt for a link to your photo instead of an email. Post your link in the comment box